Business honours at special ball

MORE than �6,000 was raised at a charity ball attended by 150 of the district's businesses.

MORE than �6,000 was raised at a charity ball attended by 150 of the district's businesses.

Four firms and some of the region's best deserving causes were all winners at the Winter Gardens event, organised by North Somerset Business Club.

The 11th annual ball also saw the presentation of the 2009 Si�n Lloyd-Jones Business Award, run by North Somerset Enterprise Agency to recognise young business talent in the area.

First prize was scooped by Weston's Insight Data, a database marketing outfit which specialises in helping companies in the building industry win new business.

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In its three years in existence the company, based in the Boulevard, has seen its turnover grow from �14,000 to almost �400,000.

In the past year it has invested in a new research centre, launched a dedicated software division and employed 12 people, with plans to create another four to six jobs in the next year.

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Its internet-based software has been adopted by companies ranging from British PLCs and American Fortune 500 companies to training and accreditation agencies and small manufacturers.

Managing director Andrew Scott said he was 'delighted' with the award.

He said: "Insight has enjoyed 150 per cent year-on-year growth and our team has worked incredibly hard to build the most innovative, forward thinking supplier of data for the window industry.

"To be awarded Business of the Year 2009 by the Government-backed Enterprise Agency is a direct reflection of our passion for growth, innovation and continued investment."

Weston restaurant Oak and Glass, which specialises in modern British cuisine at its premises in Uphill Road North was awarded third prize in the awards.

Presenting the awards, Barclays business manager Jenny Trapnell said: "This year's entries were of an exceptionally high standard, making judging very difficult.

"All four winning entrants impressed us not only with their exciting achievements across these areas but with their ambitions to continue their growth in the future.

"They are all businesses of which North Somerset can be very proud."

The award has been given since 2000 in memory of the team's former colleague who 'worked tirelessly' as client services co-ordinator before dying of a brain haemorrhage at the age of 32.

Money raised at the ball, which included �2,250 in match-funding from Barclays, will be given to the bank's nominated charities Weston Hospicecare, Children's Hospice South West's Babe's Big Appeal and The Women's Project.

Other charities and community projects in the area will also benefit throughout the year and are invited to apply for funds by contacting Hazel Wintle at North Somerset Enterprise Agency on 01934 418118.

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